Pew Charitable Trust Survey – How Suburbanites View Philadelphia

This is a very interesting survey on what residents of Philadelphia’s PA and NJ suburbs think of the city.  It’s worth a few minutes to read over:

http://www.pewtrusts.org/our_work_report_detail.aspx?id=62459

Another Iconic Company Leaves Philly

Map of Philadelphia County highlighting Center...

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The economy is the culprit behind Robbins Diamonds leaving Pennsylvania.  We all remember those silly commercials with Jerry Robbins having a diamond in his beard, I’m sure.

Robbins Diamonds had three locations.  They closed their 8th and Walnut Street store in Center City, Philadelphia along with their store in Allentown.  Robbins blames the horrible economy.  Interestingly, they are keeping their large Newark, Delaware store open.  It has tons of free parking, access to Interstate 95 and Delaware has no sales tax.  (aha!)

Robbins stated he is glad to still be in business considering big names like Jack Kellmer, Bailey, Banks & Biddle and Caldwell’s have closed.  There are still 37 stores left on Jewelers Row in Philadelphia.

Another one bites the dust!

Company Relocating National Headquarters To Chester Riverfront

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Delaware County

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This is great news for Chester!  Power Home Remodeling Group, the nations fourth-largest home-remodeling company, is relocating their corporate headquarters to Chester’s riverfront.  (Sounds like a ULI recommendation to me) 

The Wharf at Rivertown is a mixed-use office and retail project along the Chester riverfront.  Governor Rendell, when he’s not busy yelling at Leslie Stahl, said “This project will continue the impressive development of the city’s waterfront area and build upon its growing reputation as a great location for businesses looking to relocate or expand.”

The Governor’s Action Team (GAT) coordinated the project.  GAT is made up of economic development professionals who work with businesses that are interested in expanding in or relocating to Pennsylvania.

A $300,000 grant was obtained with the help of the Delaware County Commerce Center.  The entire Power Home Remodeling Group project will cost $1 million dollars.  It will create 270 new jobs within three years and keep the 278 jobs already in Chester.

Sounds like Chester, PA is open for business!

Wilmington Trust Sold To M&T Bank

Wilmington Trust headquarters with the I. M. P...

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Yet another local bank is being gobbled up by a larger one.  Wilmington Trust has been purchased, at a very discounted rate, by M&T Bank after being bailed out in 2008 by the federal government.

Wilmington Trust made a profit every year from 1903 to 2008 when they lost their proverbial shirt on construction loans.

For those of you who like trivia, M&T Bank and First Niagara Bank are both Buffalo, NY based banks and have recently purchased Philadelphia area banks.

Once the sale goes through next summer, Wilmington Trust branches will be renamed and M&T Bank will become Delaware’s largest bank (deposits).